7 Email Marketing Metrics that Matter


Gone are the days where being a “safe” sender was enough to save your message from landing in the spam folder. Now mailbox providers rate each sender on a number of criteria to determine whether your message lands in a potential customer’s inbox — or in the spam folder. They have increasingly sophisticated ways to limit marketing messages from landing in inboxes.

Many of the metrics we will discuss here are not reportable to most marketing automation systems. However, it is is important to understand how your sending domain is ranked and analyzed by the recipient and that is the point of this information.

Here are 7 email marketing metrics you need to pay attention to according to a report from RP Metrics.

Email Marketing Metrics

  1. Deleted before reading rate: This is the rate at which receivers trash your message without opening it. These people are not interested in your message for whatever reason. Using interesting subject lines and reaching a demographic that lines up well with your business is key to keeping this rate low. Social and dating sites tend to do poorly in this category, whereas office supplies and flowers/gifts do well.
  2. Read rate: This simply measures the rate at which people read the messages you send. It’s the easiest way to measure how engaged recipients are. If they’re not reading your messages, you may need to tinker with the timing or how the subject line is phrased. Industries with customer accounts such as banking typically have a high rate over 30 percent whereas other sectors like media marketing and nonprofits have rates below 20 percent.
  3. Reply rate: When recipients reply to a message, that’s a good sign that the sender is another person and not a spam bot. However, for businesses, a high reply rate might mean more people are unsubscribing from your list. There’s no goal to hit for this, but having an inbox that isn’t called “noreply” is a good start.
  4. Spam replacement rate: This is the number of emails sent that end up in spam folders as a percentage of all emails sent. Certain content triggers (like having too many images) could mean your message lands in a spam folder.  Banking and finance have excellent replacement rates compared to automotive, education, nonprofit, and government, which have some of the lowest rates.
  5. Complaint rate: Even if your message reaches a recipient, they still may mark it as spam. Although these rates are typically under 0.5%, it’s still important to notice how often people are actively marking your messages as spam.
  6. Forward rate: This is how often recipients pass your message on to other users. Having a high forward rate is a good thing, but is difficult to obtain. Utilities and telecommunications—businesses that issue invoices that need to be shared with others—had the highest rates in this category.
  7. Not marked as spam rate: This counts the number of times a recipient specifically marks your message as “not spam.” For that to happen, the message has to initially land in the spam folder. Therefore, a low rate may not be a bad thing—your messages may just initially be going to inboxes. However, some industries—like education and health & beauty—saw a positive change in this category over the last year.

The bottom line is that email marketing is becoming more sophisticated. Companies need to develop flexible strategies and respond to customer feedback faster than ever before. By keeping track of critical metrics and adjusting their messages, digital marketers can better engage customers and keep out of the dreaded spam folder. Especially if you regularly clean your data, only use an opt-in list and most importantly only send content that nurtures, educates and is expected by the recipient.

Article source: RP Metrics

Copyright 2017 Viral Solutions

Lindsey Perron

Lindsey Perron

Queen of the Machine for Viral Solutions LLC

vs logo long clear revised



“If a brand genuinely wants to make a social contribution, it should start with who they are, not what they do. For only when a brand has defined itself and its core values can it identify causes or social responsibility initiatives that are in alignment with its authentic brand story.” ~ Simon Mainwaring

customer value optimization specialist


At Viral Solutions we are committed to seeing YOU succeed. It is our goal to grow your business with proven digital marketing strategies that will help your business for the long haul.

Stay Up To Speed in the Ever Changing World of Marketing!

Sign-up today for FREE, monthly marketing tips, loopholes, and news to EXPLODE your Return on Investment!



Share your knowledge and gain exposure by becoming a guest author on our blog! Learn how to write for us.

Filed Under: Analytics, Content Creation

About Lindsey Perron

As Thomas’ daughter, Lindsey was introduced to the world of sales and marketing at an early age. Curious about what her dad did, Lindsey would jump at every opportunity to help and ride along on sales calls. Always quick to take charge and lead the group—a trait that has only grown with time—Lindsey was frequently told by her parents that she was destined to be a manager or CEO of some sort. While working toward earning her bachelor’s degree in human services from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, Lindsey interned with the UW Office of Equality and Affirmative Action and served on several councils, which gave her the opportunity to develop her persuasive writing skills, researching skills, problem-solving skills, project management skills, and more. After working as the lead teacher of the 4-year-old room at the local daycare center, Lindsey decided to switch gears and join the Viral Solutions team. In her position, Lindsey is able to help clients think through an end goal and reverse engineer it into the steps needed to achieve it.

When she’s not working, Lindsey loves spending time with family, be it traveling somewhere together or just hanging out at home.